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tv   Close Up  CSPAN  May 6, 2011 7:00pm-8:00pm EDT

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know about that? >> certainly. >> okay, i yield to my colleague from arkansas, mr. griffin. ..eld to my colleague. >> i want to shift gears a little bit and talk about russia some. on the judiciary committee, we have looked into the issue of piracy, and a lot of that, it seems, stems from activities, illegal activities, in russia. some of it by organized crime, and when i look at some of the official cooperation with european countries on terrorism and law enforcement and the many different areas that we cooperate with our european allies, i often see russia included in some of those agreements and relationships that sends a signal that russia
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is helpful and a partner on a lot of these issues. i have -- i would just like to get your take, both of you, on issues of russia, how they are on issues of piracy, and if they've cooperated with us. and i'd like you to also address the role of organized crime in russia, and we're not hearing as much about it as we did maybe five years ago. i think it's fair to say, just in terms of press coverage -- i don't know if that's because it's become so routine or maybe it's decreased -- if you could comment on the role of organized crime in russian society today and how that impacts, if at all, the official russian government's cooperation with us on counter-terrorism and things
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like piracy. so i would welcome your comments on that. >> thank you very much, sir. i confess in the counter-terrorism environment, we have put aside the issue of piracy. i would welcome a debriefing on that. i will say we have not detected any impact in our cooperation on counter-terrorism from those issues, and in the course of what is a very close relationship with the russians on counter-terrorism, i think that we would certainly be able to discern. i will say that the counter-terrorism cooperation was a bright spot in the u.s.-russian relationship before the administration came into office, and it has continued to
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be, and i think we've actually deepened our cooperation with the russians on counter-terrorism as deputy assistant secretary komens can contest as well. we've done a lot of work with them on asian security, and we're developing some agreements in that area and will come into fruition soon and we've cooperated closely on issues such as designating al-qaeda members and al-qaeda terrorists and we've also had an exchange of information on subjects of interest. so i think it's a very good relationship and one where we are continually looking for ways to deepen it to the benefit of all of our citizens. >> have you seen any identifiable limits on their
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willingness -- russia's willingness to cooperate on counter-terrorism? is there any threat that is a threat to the united states where they have been unwilling to show the cooperation that they've shown, for example, in al-qaeda, or have they been a partner in the sense that we have gotten to know other european allies as partners? >> is there an asterisk by russia? >> no, i certainly wouldn't say there is an asterisk, and i have an excellent relationship with my counterpart in russia, who is a first-class leader in this area and widely recognized as such. i wouldn't say there is an asterisk, but i would just, you know, reiterate that some of our relationships in western europe go back many, many decades, and obviously in a historical
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perspective, we're still building the relationship with the russian republic day by day. but i'm quite pleased with the progress, and i have every hope for a continued success in this. let me put it this way, i haven't come up against any hard walls. >> do we have any time for the secretary? >> sure. >> secretary, if you could address the russian relationship. >> thank you, congressman griffith. i will echo everything that admiral benjamin said with respect to not having encountered any brick walls and the great depth of our partnerships in western europe, albeit the most recent partnership in asia. we have put some additional ideas in front of the russians. i can think of one additional
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setting. this one concerns transportation, and others concern transportation as well, having to do with securing aviation, securing airports, but also bridges, tunnels, that's a multi-mode am removal. we gave them weekend to post -- >> i'm getting ready to yield to mr. bill rachus and. >> there is russian troops, as you know, on georgian voil. you might consider giving us an update on that and what the long-term prognosis is. because the people in georgia are very concerned about that in the future. with that i'll yield to mr. borakis. >> thank you, mr. chairman, i
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appreciate it. secretary kumens, thank you, of course, for your service. you noted that every week there are 2500 flights between the united states and europe, and they said. they used that as our point of departure in the united states. i apologize if you covered this >> wear -- where we have the pushback is in the releasing of international data. why does the eeu believe that sharing of data regarding only
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must beloads? seems like a long time to me. if you can answer that question, i'd appreciate it. zds as. >> i can share some of the she not mea-- sentiment. it's important to realize we are dealing with twoifrent ntal reeucture across the governmentr they have government. they have privacy laws that differ from ours in some respects, despite the fact that the underlying foundation, as you said, is quite similar and there is much more that unites us than divides us. but there are distinctions that are important to them, so they
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would like us to go through and consider every aspect of the agreement carefully. did they get this retained? what sort of date at that time did you tell him? >>. >> one we look forward to concluding to getting close to an agreement, and as i said, in later months, we will determine it. >> i think that covers it, i really do. note we have a new subset of players, in a sense. we're no longer dealing with the european parliament, but in some ways congress has to explore all these different issues and satisfy itself in a way, and the
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eeu did not. it's an education, if you will, and share some of the. i really do think a lot of it is learning how -- we do the same things in different ways, so i don't think there is a dash working their way through challenges. thank you. >> my next question is for secretary cumens. i am wondering about the radi l radicalizati radicalization, particularly as it relates to the balkans, mainly ini albania.
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tehran is closest to the most corrupt capital in the world. what -- less of a haven that fair owe's on the united states? >> thank you, congressman. with respect to albania -- i should preface my remarks by saying everywhere where the department of homeland security declares internationally. we work with the department of state and choose omission authority. that being the case in about 99% of our postings. countries such as albainia, we are particularly dependent on the state that would be
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different. of defense, it has been -- the engagement in albania has been through the international law enforcement academy, alea in bucharest. there has been a certain amount of training and capacity building that has taken place. i don't have that off the top of my head, but i can supply that to you. >> would you provide the information to me? thank you very much for being here today. we appreciate your testimony and the questions you answered so forthrightly. we'll probably have another hearing on this subject down the road. i looked at the map the other day of e e e e e e e e e one were
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our coverage of the house foreign affairs hearing continues with a portion focusing on relations between the u.s. and the european union since osama bin laden's death. this is about 40 minutes. >> returned the air-conditioning down a little bit to make it a little bit more palatable in
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here. so i hope you feel comfortable. gary smith is the director ofprt the program on advanced ai strategic studies of the american enterprise institute. and the director of the aei program on american citizenship. dr. schmidt is a more warm in here. i hope you appreciate it. dr. schmitt is a former staff director of the senate select committee on intelligence. he was executive director of the president's foreign intelligence advisory board during president ronald reagan's second term. dr. schmitt's work focuses on longer term strategic issues that will affect security at home and its ability to lay abroad. margaret thatcher, center of freedom. ms. mcnamara joined in 2006 and focuses on particular i go i can
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issues and the war on terrorism. she also -- that would be forthcoming in 2004, a member of the european parliament in brussels. with that you can ask questions. >> if i can begin by offering, eat the mussels in brussels. very poetic. i don't eat the musserks ls.
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the question i really can't focus on is the threat of isringhausen laum i can terrorism. this is a broad topic, so i'm more than happy, after sally and i finish up the talk with more detailed topics, as you wish. ly last summer i tiled. there were two reasons i conducted the study. first i wanted to see if there were other lessons to be learned and how other dmok raesz, especially those who dealt with terrorism in the past, were handling the new threat. my second goal was to make sure america's response tartism good for the plate. on the first, much to my
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surprise, the value of comparing our respect active approachesiv the allies brought together few lessons learned. the differences are many. different legal system, different national histories, different constitutional structures and differences in the perceived threat. but that said, two points stood out to me. the first is that in each european country i looked at, it was placed clear that a threat grew. so outstanding differences between the wall and intelligence informing. second, it's. the approach to counter-terrorism, i found this remark to be of the with the
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explicit purpose of that country from becoming a safe haven for terrorism again. counter terrorist operations outside of france on at least three occasions over the past year and a half. even the germans are perhaps the most effective allies in afghanistan contribute special operation forces to help remove the taliban from power prior to 9/11. and in the past year, they've eliminated much of the caveats that were in place as part of its current afghan mission. so while there is certainly a difference in the scale of what we do militarily compared to our allies, it is not the case that they have no law enforcement approach to counter-terrorism. third, this will deeply
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encouraged. in short, they don't twist, when one looks at the laws, data sharing, preventive arrests, the monetary loss, even germany has utilized ethnic pro filing and data mining while spain, the u.k. and france all have detention of terrorist suspects, days of intergags being suspected terrorists, who for one reason.
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let me kwk thatx. that system rests on francis 'investigative. >> this is an array of powers. the only american office that bears some resemblance is that of an independent council. but unlike an independent council whose mandate is tied to a particular face, they can build-up and discretionary power that this is not to suing, that when we thing about our own response, we must recognize that the united states is not bringing on the car meal
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leadership i need. >> thank you. miss mcnamara? >> dwirnd members of the committee. with your agreement, may my testimony be entered in for the record and i just have some remarks for the day. >> mr. chairman, many of america's strongest allies in this fight are in europe, first among them, the united kingdom. but in addition to individual nation stalts, thetes, the eu in additional in the united states. they recognized terrorism as a defense. it denies terrorists border hopping when another terrorism was not looked at. the eu also financial assets
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will be frozen and to whom they're denied. this is proving to be one of the most valuable conclusions. and my opportunity to raise funding in europe. the eu has also countered several missouri tamts. recruit them to terrorism and the training of terrorism. however, the eu is severyour si. these keep the united states away from what they further should be doing. they have weakened rather than strengthened cab mary.
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they failed to unite it on the grounds that an 18-hour curfew may breach the european convention on human rights. the u.s. should be especially wary of the eu's political agenda in this regard because it's the way the eu spends money inside the united states to savor its political causes. they vangsed among observes, the statute of the criminal although court. the closing of guantanamo bay and u.s. recommendation of policies. after 9/11, they tried to walk in solidarity, but since then, it's been marked as much by confrontation has it has by cooperation.
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the eu has attempted to frustrate several counter-terrorism policies, the trucking program which is also known as the smith agreement and u.s. ren additions. in terms of the piano and a greet, and they have duchb it on a fill rit ration. . they should stop this involvement and approve the deal from 2007, the program is essentially for day watch spen. a swift lead canceled by the -- however, any piece has forced ift upon the program, too, which
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has limited its usefulness. the eu does understand that fill traiting the money is a power against terrorism. if the eu and the united states are clearly against terrorism, you will have fill traited all these markets. therefore, it's hard to see it as a terrorist organization. the eu's willingness to turn a blind eye is uncon shonable. our funding, moral, political and material support would dry up. with regard to detention of renditions policy, i am sure the honorable members here today remember the european parliaments 2006 investigation when poland and romania was
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found hosting those facilities. no statement has been declared and these reports could have been used to find information involved in the successful operation against osama bin laden this month. all the sisters say is bilateral reels ships, especially in terms of sbelgment vooelsz relations. the remainder steps down in particular with sbelt means as getting all this together. in fact, they have been compared to -- i would recommend the following policies to the european union, which you may want to bear in mind on your trip. the european parliament should approve the 2007 euuspnr
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agreement without modification. the current euus legal negotiations to adopt an umbrella agreement on data sharing should simply accept u.s. data provisions as adequate. the eu should also add hezbollah to its list of formal terrorist organizations, and they should include individualists who are engaged in any terrorist activities. thank you very much. >> now, you're with the margaret thatcher -- >> have not f-- center for free. >> boy, they picked the right one for that. i was mesmerized by what you said. first of all, you think if the eu was more cooperative in
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trying to cut off funds to hezbollah that we could have that organization dry up because they have said so themselves. >> i don't think we could end hezbollah, but we could make things incredibly difficult for them. they use europe as a base, they use it as a staging point and the united states has passed legislation requesting time and again the european union to lift hezbollah as a formal terrorist organization. that needs to happen and it needs to happen sooner rather than later. we have seen no fruits of any sort of engagement except for the fact that europe is nothing more than, as they say themselves, a political, moral and fund-raising base. >> wow. i want to you make notes of everything this young lady said, because when i go to brussels, i'm certainly going to utilize that. i have a couple other questions
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and that is, across the northern tier of africa and the gulf area, we see the rise of, quote, unquote -- sorry for this feedback -- the rise of, quote, unquote, the freedom movement. what is it. >> the arab spring movement. >> -- the arab spring movement. and i'd like to get your take on that and how that will -- what would the end result be if all of these uprisings are successful? i'm very concerned. i know that muammar gadhafi has been a tyrant for a long time, but we took him off the terrorist list a few years ago and now we're participating with france in running him out of office and there is a major civil war going on over there right now. in egypt we've seen a big
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change. bart is gone and we're looking forward to elections, i believe, in september and later on in the year. we see changes, possibly, in syria and elsewhere. and my big concern, as you heard from the first panel, is, what are we going to have in the future? can we do something about this? i'm very concerned that more radical elements -- >> is that better? >> that's better. -- more radical elements may be on the horizon. and i don't know what we can do to predict that or what we can do to completely eliminate that possibility, but i'd like to have your ideas on how we should deal with this unusual state of affairs that are taking place all throughout that region right now. and as i said before, it's not just because of security and stability in the middle east, it's because the energy needs in
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the united states, we are so dependent, at least in large part, from energy from the middle east, and if we see radical elements take over in syria and possibly in jordan and egypt and libya and across that area and we also have some problems in yemen, as you know, big problems in yemen, and the persian gulf. i'd like to know what you think from your think tank's perspective we can expect and what we should be doing to stop the possibility of radical action taking place. i know it's a big, big question but one that i think is extremely important. >> that is a big question, and of course a lot of these questions are going to vary in different circumstances. we have different players and different ways of influencing in each country. but let me say --
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>> we have been told by our intelligence people al-qaeda is in libya. people who fought in afghanistan with al-qaeda are now in legal positions in some of those tribes. in egypt, the muslim brotherhood is an organization that in the past has been looked upon as a radical organization. the same thing is true over in syria. that's radical elements in those areas that may be different in some respects, but incompete ths americans ought to have some idea of where we're heading, especially if we're talking about giving support to the rebels in libya and the democratic movement in egypt and possibly supporting movements in these other countries as well. we get one view from the state department and from homeland security. this is the american government's positions. but you folks are experts in
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think tanks that work on this all the time, and i'd like to have your candid observations in this area. >> to start, i'm quite worried that arab spring is going to turn into an arab winter, and i mean that in the worst possible way besides the points you're making. i've had a number of conversations with european friends in government and the european union about what their plans are in the revolutions. we know that we basically had all these failed policies for the last ten years, so then you ask them, what are you going to do, and they have no answer. so there is a passivity. they're still trying to figure out, what kind of policies are we going to implement? so that's not a good sign. on the american end, i would say that -- i think, to be frank,
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the administration has something of a hands-off approach to what's going on out of the fear that they'll look like they're being american colonialists, so to speak. i don't think that's the way to handle the situation. if you want to prevent the worst from happening, you have to get involved. it doesn't always mean you'll succeed, but i know if you're not deeply involved and trying to move things forward in the right way, you won't succeed and you won't have the success that you want and you wind up with radical elements, actually, because they are more organized. they'll wind up being the dominant figures in these revolutions as we move on. so i think we're actually in a quite dangerous period where we've got revolutions and both the united states and our allies are acting way too passively when it comes to these changes. >> i absolutely agree, my friend, dr. schmitt. i think leadership matters. there is this idea that if
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america takes a backseat, they'll look like colonialists. i think there is a difference between taking a backseat and looking weak. america can only succeed if america is involved, and i think american leadership is desperately needed in the region. with regard to libya, i think that's a key test case. if libya goes the right way, i think it will provide an example. i do agree sadly that i don't think we have our eye entirely on the ball. we have seen recently that president obama, president sarkozy and prime minister cannon put out a big paper saying get out, gadhafi, you absolutely have to go. i agree. how are we going to do it? i would like to see a stronger objective, i would like to see greater american involvement. one thing i'm not in a position to comment on, and you may know yourself, surely we have intelligence on libya and the opposition in libya. we have been there for a number of years now, we've had a failed engagement, but the result of that is we probably had a lot of western involvement, a lot of
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western intelligence. we probably know something about the opposition, even if we don't know everything about them. we need to start looking now about who do we think is in our best interest? who are the libyan people going to support? i don't know if this is a civil war. it looks to me like gadhafi is just massacring his own people. i would like to see a test case and that's why i would like to see more american involvement. second, libya has constantly failed. a few years ago we had a mediterranean union. it was hailed as one of the eu's greatest strategies, they were going to engage north africa and it was going to be more democratic, there was going to be great energy products. some of the stuff we were saying was ludicrous. as it's happened, we spent a lot of money at not seeing any results. david cameron has recently asked the european union to look at its entire aid program, look
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where aid program. look where the money is going, the provisional reports coming back is that their projects are horrific. they're spent badly and it's highly ineffective in terms of what we want to do. promote our values, relieve poverty. that sort of thing, so i think the eu needs to take a root and branch look at its policies and change them. >> i have another question or two after my comment. >> i'm not going to be long. >> thank you. appreciate it. i want to pose the same questions i posed to the previous panel. maybe i can ask mcna mara first, on the eu dragging its feet, can you elaborate on that, please? >> in my longer testimony, i
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outlined what happened and the different situations we have been been through and it looks almost like a fairy tale. the europeans want this, the americans agree even though they think it will limit the program and the europeans say, not good enough. originally, america asked for 38 pieces of data. you've said, okay, give us 19. this is mandated by u.s. law that this information has to be provided in advance. that's why in my view, it happened, so good one for doing that, but the europeans, they don't like this program. a polish mep came to heritage in late february last year. under the lisbon treaty, new powers granted saw them immediately strike down the third it ration at the pr agreement and he said when the european parliaments did this, there was whopping and cheering
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in the chamber. he said, i thought we'd won the world cup or something. heard him say, we've got those americans. the us is the americans. the most absurd part about this, we act as if we're just trying protect americans. we're not. we're trying to protect people in the ue, too. the crew, the staff, the pilots. if al-qaeda was intent on crashing the plane as we saw in pennsylvania, if they can't m manage to get their target, they'll kill as many as possible. this is about protecting european people as well as americans. it's the european parliament. i've never experienced anything like it in my entire life. i think this is about the european parliament being juvenile. i think the pnr agreement we
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have in place, i think it should not only be agreed, but extended for another seven years. i would like to see more pieces of information, but that probably won't happen. the agreement we've got, we've had testimony about war supplies. we even have the eu foreign minister on record before she was appointed, saying this is a vital program. she testified in the house of laws that the pn rrr agreement a vital program and now, we're seeing pushback on it. i think it's wrong. >> thank you. dr. schmidt? sorry. you're right about the new eu parliament exercising its muscles since the lisbon treaty. i think one thinks we sometimes don't appreciate the degree to which there has been very fundamental changes and eu governing structures. it's called a treaty, a very much constitutional agreement.
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i would also say that along with the parliament, one of the difficulties we have is with the european court of human rights. another body which is relatively independent and not responsible for to directly to home governments. all as producing a lot of decisions which are very problematic when it comes to security. i know that if i was in government, it would be a very complex thing to handle. we have, i think it's fair to say, very good relations bilaterally with a lot of countries, even countries we are very much in disagreement with. when it came to intelligence sharing and security matters behind the 9/11 curtain, they were very cooperative. eu element really does make this a more complex game. whether eu matures or not, that's an open question. right now, it's a very difficult obstacle in gets the security
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matters accomplished. thank you. >> yes. >> i'm sorry. there's a couple of things i forgot that i'd like to say. >> you recently, a few years ago, added new countries to the visa waiver program. i think it is a fantastic thing. not least of all, a great public diplomacy thing. familiarity breeds favorablety. when people come to the united states, they find they love americans, they're great. they want to come back. they want to spend money. everyone's a winner. however, the part of having all these frights coming in, you need information, you stop the bad guys coming. when you upgraded the visa waiver program, you upgraded the security requirements and it's been very, very successful. at the time, i remember i held a public program and we hosted the honorable richard barr. the eu was in the audience and said, we might take members states to court. it puts to the ue how much
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information they get. the eu is trying to supernationalize visa policy. at the nation state level, it works pretty well. now one warning i will give here, i'm afraid the eu might have -- the heritage foundation for once. for a number of years, i had recommended there should be an umbrella agreement in terms of respecting data transfer, good standards that the europeans can accept that. the way americans treat data is good enough. the eu and u.s. is now negotiating, however, i am very afraid that that umbrella agreement is going to turn into the eu trying to limit further agreements instead of just being a generic agreement, only if it's limited to being held for a certain amount of day, narrowly
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providing the scope that you can request information. i'm afraid it's going to be a shopping list of restrictions. and i would caution you to be very careful on that. >> thank you very much. dr. schmidt? >> i apologize, this is a big, larger point, which is that if a bomb, god forbid, goes off in london. it's not the eu held responsible. it's the members of pa lament of the united kingdom. i think that's a fundamental distinction, which is that you have members of a governing body in the parliament elected on all kinds of grounds, but protecting the citizens of a particular country. >> thank you. one more question or do i have time? again, the question in regard o toto alban albania.
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what do you suppose to stamp out human trafficking and arms trafficking that characterize the economies of countries such as albania? >> i really don't have this expertise to be able to answer that with any, in any specificity. my suspicious is that this is something they've given over to the european union to sort soft take responsibility for, since basically, the europeans face the brunt, doesn't mean you don't have responsibility. given the resources i would say that's probably something they're looking across to address less than we are. >> would you like to comment? >> yeah, the european union does actively deal with albania. i spend the vast majority of my time talking about what the eu shouldn't be doing. so let me change that and talk about what the eu should be doing. the eu should have a sensible neighborhood strategy. where it could be helpful is in its earn neighborhood and in the
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ba ball cans. i'd like to see more attention focused in this area -- lord help us, it's not going to happen. so, i would like to see them have a more proactive strategy in the balkans. what we have found is countries as a recent member of nato, they generally do well inside the alliance because they pick up best practice, they use with the colleagues. it's a very easy way of sharing information of saying, hey, we don't like this, you've got to do something about it, without making it an official diplomatic hoo ha. i think you should use your channels within nato to do that. >> thank you very much. thanks for testimony. appreciate it. thank you. >> my colleague and i are going to go visit the greek, cyprus
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and turkey and will probably have some questions for you down the road. one of the troubling things, at least it troubles me, is indicated, was that the eu seems to want to u serp some of the intelligence capabilities, the dissemination of intelligence information between the united states and these countries. that's troubles because as you said before, we've had pretty good working relationship with most of those european countries regarding intelligence gathering. is this a problem that's going to increase? is it going to be more difficult to get intelligence data because of the eu? or i mean, i was not aware of this kind of problem until today. >> it would be an overstatement for me to tell you, european countries aren't going to give you information because of the eu. as dr. schmidt said again, this is the governments of these
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countries who have to protect the citizens. i think intelligence services are working pretty well. in terms of the eu trying to limit that, it is definitely the case. they have said their goal is to have one judicial system in europe. now, that might sound great, but in reality, it's not going to happen. can you imagine if you, mexico and canada all of a sudden said, we're going to have one judicial system? most people would think quite enough. there's a reason. so, the eu has institutionalized things. we have europe. we have euro just. all of these things which most british people don't even know about. these are trying to get in on the intelligence game. and i think that is hugely problematic. now, one thing i will say to you, the eu occasionally operates with the height of hypocrisy and the european respond as one of those things. we have had a year long investigation by the european
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parliament over u.s. rendition practices. oh, the americans are breaking the law, they're doing this, they're doing that. the european arrest warrant means that one member state, let's take greece, for example can request any person be extradited to greece without a single bit of evidence. does this happen? you bet. 1800 british citizens have been rendered. we were told this was an antiterrorism measure. being rendered to other european countries because they left a gas station without paying the bill. i know gas prices are high, but in tradition, let's face it. >> 1800, you said? >> 1800, i believe, is the latest number. >> that's because of the eu's policy? >> absolutely. 100%. european arrest warrant. it was a five-ship project by the european union meant to be
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about terrorism and it's not been about terrorism. scotland yard has said come p plying with these warrants, it is taking our resources up. that was what i was testifying about, diverting the key resources for member states to do ridiculous things like this. i would rather the u.s. be using its -- the uk be using its antiterrorism resources to look who's preaching hate to render terroris terrorists, not to get people who haven't paid their bill at a petrol station. >> what, in your opinion, should we do as far as intelligence gathering capability, talking about the cia or fbi, to be making sure there is complete
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cooperation between the european countries at risk like we are and not have to worry about there being an impediment. i'm really concerned after having heard what you said today that information that we might need in order to stop somebody like bin laden or one of his n minions from perpetrating another attack on england, france, united states, that we might be at risk for not being able to stop it because there is an impediment to this shares of information, so if you could give me a reassuring answer. >> my number one recommendation would be to maintain your bilateral alliances. >> with individual countries? >> with individual countries. >> and not go through the eu.
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>> with all due respect to president obama when he came into office, i think he found a lot of enthusiasm for the eu. thought this is a great national multialliance. i think he's realized, sometimes, it's best to go through. in my view, the vast majority of the time, for things like intelligence, you must maintain those strong alliances and the way of doing that is other ways. poland was a perfect example. such a strong allyally. i met a polish guy who told me, why is it okay for 2,000 polish soldiers to be fighting alongside the americans in afghanistan where they don't need a visa, but we need a visa to get into the united states when the guys next to us can get in on visa waiver. i think good public diplomacy, maintaining your strong bilateral alliances and also, members of congress, you have a
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fantastic position here. i would not be afraid to push back with the european parliament. what they have done over the record agreement has endangered a key, counterterrorism policy and you have every right to be angry about that. and you have pa lamentriens on your side. it's new, intrapa lamentry grouping and they are some of the most pro-american groups. >> can you give me some information on that? >> absolutely. >> my impression from again, when i was doing research and i had extensive discussions with intelligence and security officials in london and berlin and madrid, and paris, my impression was that the cooperation, bilateral level was still very high and that
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there's -- this doesn't make it easier, but there's a considerable amount of rhetoric that points in one direction, when operationally, things are going quite well in the other direction. there's a little hypocrisy and the public officials would say that what they're actually doing on the ground. >> let me end up by just saying this. if you at your various organizations come up with any information that would lead you to believe there is an impediment to the united states getting intelligence data we need, we should let this subcommittee know because we would immediately contact home land security and the state department to make sure that they knew that we were concerned about this. >> if i could just add one more thing, one of the problems we found after 9/11 was is that the european union was a sense that precisely because the waters were so -- member states, there
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was a need in fact to work with the eu to sort of strengthen the capacity to change information and sort of holding the system. where people had hasafe havens. there are real problems the unions have in these things. on the other hand, there's a need to work with them, european uni union's not going to go away. >> okay. i want to thank both of you for your testimony. i'd like to say for the record that will representative meeks and engel, minority members of the committee, would have been here, but they're with the president at ground zero, so they extend their apologies and thanks for being here. we stand adjourned.
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[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
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